December 8, 2016 / 6:41 PM / 8 months ago

Portugal must watch its spending: ECB, Commission

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FRANKFURT, Dec 8 (Reuters) - The Portuguese government must spend its money more efficiently to bring down its high public debt and meet its obligations as bond yields rise, the European Central Bank and the European Commission said on Thursday.

The two institutions had just completed their fifth "surveillance mission" since Portugal left its bailout programme in 2014.

"The very high level of public debt and the associated high interest payments call for a clear consolidation strategy for the short and medium term," they said.

"In particular, there is scope to enhance the efficiency of public spending in Portugal."

They added: "The pursuit of prudent fiscal policy and ambitious growth-enhancing reforms is key to improving Portugal's potential growth and its resilience to shocks, in particular amidst volatile sovereign yields and high financing needs in the medium term." (Reporting by Francesco Canepa; editing by Andrew Roche)

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